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Defender vital for Boro - Mowbray

Defender vital for Boro - Mowbray

Middlesbrough manager Tony Mowbray believes the return of experienced former England defender Jonathan Woodgate to be crucial to their promotion chances.

The 32-year-old ex-Real Madrid centre-back has managed only eleven appearances since arriving at the Riverside over the summer and has seen a thigh problem keeping him out of the last four games.

Mowbray has already openly admitted he will need to be particularly selective over in which games Woodgate appears in order to get the most out of him.

"You don't realise until you see him train the things he does so well for the team," Mowbray told BBC Tees. "If we can get him into a good percentage of matches then I think he'll really help the cause.

"It's difficult to pick the games he'll play in and those we'll give him a rest - making sure his body doesn't break down - but that's for us to discuss," he continued. "The medical department, sports science, Woody and myself, we'll try to get that right."

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Writer:Vital Boro
Date:Friday December 7 2012
Time: 3:03PM

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2 Middlesbrough 28 17 5 6 56 23
3 Burnley 30 15 10 5 55 22
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5 Derby County 30 13 12 5 51 14
6 Sheff Wed 30 13 11 6 50 12
7 Ipswich 30 13 9 8 48 2
8 Birmingham 30 13 8 9 47 8
9 Cardiff 30 11 12 7 45 5
10 Forest 30 10 12 8 42 6
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12 Brentford 30 11 7 12 40 -2
13 Q.P.R. 30 9 12 9 39 1
14 Preston 30 9 12 9 39 -1
15 Reading 30 9 9 12 36 0
16 Leeds Utd 30 8 12 10 36 -5
17 Huddersfield 30 8 8 14 32 -4
18 Blackburn 28 6 13 9 31 0
19 Fulham 29 6 11 12 29 -5
20 Bristol City 30 6 10 14 28 -22
21 MK Dons 29 7 6 16 27 -18
22 Rotherham 30 7 4 19 25 -19
23 Bolton 30 4 12 14 24 -21
24 Charlton 30 5 9 16 24 -30
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